While Disney World tries to keep its maintenance crews inconspicuous, in Spain it was just the opposite. In central Madrid, you saw cleaners everywhere — people pushing carts and working to keep the streets free of debris. The crews wore bright neon green and blue — presumably for safety reasons, but it also served as a visible sign that people were deployed to keep the city clean.

The you-can’t-miss-them choice of outfits served to remind people that the city was paying attention to the aesthetics and environment, so even if someone saw trash, they knew there were crews working. The obvious presence of the cleaners may have also served as a deterrent to those who otherwise would throw something on the ground — it tugs a bit more on the ethics when you know a person will have to clean up your mess.

You can communicate so much without ever saying a word. Being intentional about uniforms is one way that Madrid demonstrated it values tourism, cleanliness, and safety. What do your accessories and non-verbals say about your organization?

“limpieza” translated means cleanliness or cleaning

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